“Pretending. That’s really what you’re doing – as you smile and laugh, at all the right moments, hoping it’s enough to pass, to make the others not see the sharp pain and exhaustion that wears you down like a rain soaked coat. You are the happy one. The cheerful friend, the funny, goofy, optimistic. And so you must be.”



Fiction Based on a True Story of An Awakened Soul

—Cordelia Bloom


This journal entry is inspired by true events. Some of the characters, names, businesses, incidents, and certain locations and events have been fictionalized for dramatic purposes. Any similarity to the name, character, or history of any person is entirely coincidental and unintentional.

Trigger Warning: our program often motivates people to discuss their trauma. If you find yourself feeling overwhelmed, please, take a step back to address emotional flashbacks and trauma before continuing to push yourself. If you are experiencing a medical emergency, call 911 or the National Suicide Hotline at (1-800) 273-8255.


Is it considered “pretending” if you never really thought it was pretending? Is it crazy to wake up one day and realize you’d been wearing a mask for… how long? 

It’s not that I am not a kind and fun person, I totally am! I’m an empath, I can love deeply and defend those I love fiercely. I’m responsible, incredibly hard working and have a high capacity of adaptation (the dangerous kind, the kind where you forget to change back into your green chameleon color).

The moment I woke up, I felt a tsunami of emotions drown me. Who was I? I remember screaming inside my head: WHAT THE HELL– WHAT HAVE I BEEN DOING THIS ENTIRE TIME? WHERE AM I GOING? WHAT DO I WANT TO DO? WHO AM I?

It has been one of the most intense and horrific moments of BLEH’s, UGH’s and FUCK’s– WHAT AM I DOING? I had shifted into many different colors and forms, and I totally lost sight of what really mattered: my happiness. 

I couldn’t recall-and I still can’t- the moment I had totally and completely lost myself. One thing I knew for sure was my “me-ness” was trying to catch a breath. I could feel her. All I could really say was I’M SORRY to her… so terribly sorry.

It’s only been three years since I woke up, and every day I struggle a little less with standing my ground and staying true to myself. Going to therapy has been both hard and a blessing; and my writing, a complete godsend. 

I’m going to do the things I want to do and it’ll be on my time. If I don’t like it, I won’t attend. If someone has a problem with me, look the other way, I don’t care if I make someone feel uncomfortable while I’m just being myself. Enough of that! I will not apologize for it anymore. If I feel like being cheerful or happy, I’ll be so. If I’m feeling pissy, I’ll be so. I will not be sorry for being who I am, or how I’m feeling anymore. 

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